Dear Tonya and Stephanie,
I am baffled why you cannot get all the information you need
from Dr.Steffe himself. He usually is very helpful. Anyway,
IRON was about ten years of "Interdisciplinary Research on
Number" by Steffe, myself, John Richards, and graduate
students. It was summarized in the book Children's counting
types: Philosophy, theory, and application. (New York:
Praeger, 1983). There were more than twenty papers published
by us during that decade and you can find all the references
in Steffe;s and my bibliography.
Ernst von Glasersfeld
Dear Professor von Glasersfeld,
I'm an Italian psychologist, I'm trying to understand the
epistemological foundations of Constructism. Studying your
essays i decided to investigate Vico's works and Vico's
construction of "ipsum verum factum". Reading "De Antiquissima
Italorum Sapientia" i ask to myself three questions that i
can't understand without your help.
-Does Vico construe his philosophy as a neoplatonic philosophy
and his ontology as a dualistic ontology (homo...nam extra se
-Is Vico's construction of God a second-order epistemology
(deus ens, creata entis) that not invalidate a constructivist
construction of Vico?
-Is possible for a "daseinmensch" coerently construe
experience through a constructivist epistemology (homo sibi
I hope not to annoy you with too much questions,
Dear Mr. Cheli,
Someone should write a book about the three questions you have
formulated! I can no longer do it - but I think that I have
built a foundation for it in my papers. Here are quick
1) Vico lacked the concept of viability which radical
constructivism substitutes for the representational relation
between knowledge and reality. That is why he needed - like
Berkeley - a theological metaphysics.
(You may get a clearer picture of this, if you read the
anonymous review of De Antiquissima in the "Giornale de
Letterati and Vico's reply (1711, as far as I remember).
2) Constructivism has nothing to say about ontology. It is a
rational enterprise and metaphysics lies outside its reach.
This does not create a contradiction because knowledge and
faith are different, separate domains.
3) I think Radical Constructivism has gone a long way towards
that goal. But, as I have said and written innumerable times,
RC does not claim to be a description of reality, it is a way
Ernst von Glasersfeld